Alphabet X graduates from agtech Mineral’s robotics company • TechCrunch

Alphabet X graduates from agtech Mineral’s robotics company • TechCrunch

Alphabet X graduates from agtech Mineral's robotics company • TechCrunch

A little over two years after its public debut, Mineral becomes its own company Alphabet. The team, formerly known as the “Computational Agriculture Project” (no prizes for guessing why they adopted the new name), have just graduated from X “moonshot” labs.

“After five years of incubating our technology at X, Alphabet’s Moonshot Factory, Mineral is now an Alphabet company,” CEO Elliott Grant said in a blog post. “Our mission is to help advance sustainable agriculture. To do this, we are developing a platform and tools that help gather, organize and understand never-before-seen information about the plant world and make it useful and actionable. »

Years after trying to create a robotics division largely by acquisition, Alphabet appears to be growing another organically internally. Mineral follows Everyday Robots and Intrinsic in transitioning from X to a fully published subsidiary of Alphabet.

Mineral uses its internal robots to create datasets and perform research on different cultures. He explains that – in its (mostly stealth) half-decade of existence – it’s been discovered that most companies do a pretty good job of collecting the breadth of data needed to take advantage of machine learning.

“There’s no one way to collect data that’s right for every job or farming crop,” Grant says. “We started with a plant rover that could capture huge amounts of high-quality images, and over time we developed generalized perception technology that can work on platforms like robots, third-party agricultural equipment, drones, sentinel devices and cell phones.”

The company’s end goal is to create detailed and rich datasets that can be used by farmers around the world to exploit previously unknown growth factors. By doing so, he hopes to help grow crops that are more resilient to climate change, without making the pressing problem worse.


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